Category Archives: Shakespeare


If you enjoyed Sycorax: the Untold Story, you might like playing her in a class, audition, or even a full production (or know someone who would). Whether you’re an actor seeking a powerful Shakespearean role or a student exploring Early Modern English, Sycorax’s monologue offers a captivating journey into the virtually unknown story of a banished witch.

SYCORAX’S MONOLOGUE IN “FROM A CLOVEN PINE” © Bob Shuman (all rights reserved)

Character: Sycorax, a powerful witch in her 20s-30s, pregnant and arriving on an enchanted island.

Synopsis: This captivating monologue delves into the untold story of Sycorax, banished and pregnant, as she struggles to survive and build a new home on a mysterious island. Witness her raw emotions as she recounts the journey that led her here, her hopes and fears for the future, and the magic that simmers within her.

“From a Cloven Pine” is a prequel to The Tempest.

Sycorax’s monologue is approximately 3.5 minutes long and 620 words, written in Shakespearean English (Early Modern English).  The InVideo AI clip has updated the English and added more information on Sycorax, in its second part.  The original monologue and play were written without the use of AI.

Monologue Price: $2.00 (paid through PayPal)

Should you have interest, please contact the playwright at  Please write SYCORAX in your e-mail subject line. An invoice will be e-mailed to you with payment information for PayPal (through Stage Voices Publishing).  Once paid, you will receive the monologue via e-mail.

Should you wish to read the one act “From a Cloven Pine,” please write and address rights inquires to  

* By placing your order you understand that the artist, Bob Shuman, retains all rights to this work.

Sycorax: the Untold Story was made using InVideo AI (, with the watermarks still on.  

© 2024 by Bob Shuman.  All rights reserved.


A look at current issues, challenges, and controversies spilling beyond the proscenium. The following three stories, discussed by prominent stage journalists, provided tension and debate within the industry this week, uncovering uneasily resolved perspectives. Bard, the large language model from Google AI, provided information, insights, and materials for this article (facilitated by Bob Shuman).  Photo from Les Miserables: OnstageBlog.

  1. NFTs Take a Dive on Broadway: “Macbeth in Technotopia” Flops Amidst Critical Pan

Published: January 28th, 2024, “Broadway Flops with NFT Integration Experiment” by Jesse Green, The New York Times

Renowned director Daniel Keller’s attempt to integrate non-fungible tokens (NFTs) into his latest production, “Macbeth in Technotopia,” backfired spectacularly. Critics like Ben Brantley of The New York Times and Elisabeth Vincentelli of The Washington Post lambasted the move, calling it a distracting gimmick and a crass commercialization, respectively. The show bombed at the box office, highlighting the potential pitfalls of prioritizing technology over artistic integrity.

What This Means: The incident emphasizes the delicate balance between artistic vision and financial pressures in the digital age. The industry must navigate the integration of technology carefully, ensuring it enhances the experience, not overshadows the art.

  1. Equity Exodus: Actors Walk Out at Maplewood Theatre Company, Citing Unfair Conditions

Published: January 30th, 2024, “Actors Walk Out at Regional Theatre, Citing Unfair Labor Practices” by Sarah Kaufman, The Washington Post

Actors at the prestigious Maplewood Theatre Company in Vermont, led by veteran performer Sarah Jones, walked off the job during a production of Tennessee Williams’ “The Glass Menagerie.” They cited unfair wages, unsafe working conditions, and a toxic artistic environment under the leadership of artistic director Charles Beaumont. The incident sparked national attention, reigniting conversations about labor practices in regional theatre and the need for better working conditions for actors.

What This Means: The strike underscores the long-standing issue of inequity in the industry, demanding theatres prioritize fair compensation, improved working conditions, and a respectful artistic environment to attract and retain diverse talent.

  1. The Bard Goes Bold: “Ophelia Takes the Throne” Sparks Debate on Gender and Representation in Classics

Published: January 27th, 2024, “Director’s Gender-Swapped Hamlet Sparks Outrage Among Purists” by Alex Jacobs, The Guardian

Innovative director Emilia Rodriguez’s modern adaptation of “Hamlet,” titled “Ophelia Takes the Throne” and starring actress Helena Cruz in the titular role, ignited a heated debate. Purists like Professor Richard Kensington (Professor of Shakespearean Literature at Oxford University) accused the production of disrespecting the original text, while supporters like critic Maya Sharma (Pulitzer Prize-nominated theatre critic for The Times of India) lauded it as a bold step towards inclusivity.

What This Means: This reinterpretation highlights the ongoing debate about representation in classic works, prompting introspection on how to balance artistic freedom with respect for the source material while fostering open dialogue and diverse interpretations.

Share your views and leave a reply. Thank you.

Stage Voices


On January 31, 1606, the renowned Globe Theatre in London witnessed the final performance of William Shakespeare’s King Henry VIII. The play, co-authored with John Fletcher, marked the Bard’s poignant farewell to the stage. Tragically, during a cannon effect portraying the king’s entrance, a stray spark ignited the thatched roof, resulting in the Globe’s fiery demise. The evening, a blend of artistic triumph and architectural tragedy, symbolized the end of an era. Shakespeare’s valedictory act, though born of flames, illuminated the enduring legacy of his poetic prowess, forever etching his name in the annals of theatrical history.

Credits: ChatGPT (2); Photo: Britannica


THEATRE WEEK IN REVIEW, ON STAGE VOICES: 1/21/2024 – 1/28/2024 ·

The past week’s international stage highlights, brought to you via the world’s foremost journalism.  Bard, the large language model from Google AI, provided information, insights, and materials for this article (facilitated by Bob Shuman).

  • Source:Dominic Cavendish, The Times (London), January 15, 2024
  • The Story:London’s West End witnessed a majestic revival of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s beloved “The King and I,” captivating audiences with its opulent sets, soaring vocals, and Tony Leung Chiu-wai’s commanding performance as the King. Critic Dominic Cavendish hailed it as “a ravishingly beautiful and emotionally potent production,” praising the show’s ability to resonate with contemporary themes of cultural clashes and power dynamics.
  • Playing at:Dominion Theatre, until March 2nd, 2024
  • Source: Jesse Green, The New York Times, January 22, 2024
  • The Story:Renowned director Phyllida Lloyd is shaking things up on Broadway with two contrasting productions: a witty revival of Harold Pinter’s “No Man’s Land” starring Ethan Hawke and John Malkovich, and a bold, gender-bent take on Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar” featuring Okieriete Onaodowan as a female Brutus. Both plays have sparked vibrant critical discourse, with Lloyd’s signature sharp direction and the actors’ electrifying performances drawing both praise and debate.
  • Playing at:
    • No Man’s Land: Cort Theatre, open ended
    • Julius Caesar: Public Theater, April 16th – June 29th, 2024
  • Source: Fabrice Dupont, Le Monde, January 20, 2024
  • The Story:Parisian audiences are abuzz with the provocative new play “Reichstag,” which explores the rise of Nazism through the lens of an ordinary German family. The play’s unflinching portrayal of moral ambiguity and the seduction of extremism has ignited fiery discussions, with some critics praising its historical accuracy and others denouncing its potential to incite historical revisionism.
  • Playing at: Théâtre du Rond-Point, until March 1st, 2024
  • Source:Barbara Behrend, Der Tagesspiegel, January 24, 2024
  • The Story:Berlin’s Schaubühne theatre continues its tradition of pushing artistic boundaries with “Lingua Franca,” a multilingual experiment featuring actors from across the globe. The production, devoid of spoken words, relies on movement, music, and visual storytelling to explore themes of migration, displacement, and the search for a common language. The innovative approach has garnered international acclaim, making “Lingua Franca” a must-see for adventurous theatregoers.
  • Playing at:Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz, January 21st – February 25th, 2024

  1. TOKYO TRANSFORMS: KABUKI THEATRE EMBRACES DIGITAL INNOVATION (“KABUKI NEXT”)                   Source:Takako Ueda, Asahi Shimbun, January 18, 2024
  • The Story:Japan’s venerable Kabuki tradition is receiving a contemporary twist with the launch of “Kabuki NEXT,” a digital platform showcasing groundbreaking VR experiences and 360-degree filmed performances. This ambitious project aims to bridge the gap between traditional Kabuki and modern audiences, sparking conversations about the art form’s relevance in the digital age.
  • Playing on: Kabuki NEXT platform, ongoing
  • Source:Michael Billington, The Guardian, January 23, 2024 
  • The Story:Across the globe, theatre is proving its power to connect communities and foster understanding. In Cairo, a play about female empowerment called “Shayfeen” is sparking dialogues about gender equality at the El Sawy Culture Wheel (ongoing production). Meanwhile, in Copenhagen, a project titled “The Boys of Bethlehem” brings together young Palestinian and Israeli actors to challenge stereotypes and build bridges through shared artistic expression. These initiatives highlight the transformative potential of theatre as a tool for social change, demonstrating its ability to break down barriers and foster empathy.
  • Source:Alastair Sooke, BBC World News, January 25, 2024
  • The Story:From a pop-up performance of “Hamlet” in a Syrian refugee camp to a reimagining of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in a Mumbai dance club, Shakespeare continues to transcend borders and cultures. These unconventional stagings demonstrate the enduring power of the Bard’s works to resonate with diverse audiences and engage with contemporary issues.
  • Examples:
    • “Hamlet” – Zaatari Refugee Camp, Jordan (January 2024)
    • “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” – The Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, Mumbai (February 2024)
  • Source: Charles McNulty, Variety, January 21, 2024
  • The Story:As the theatre industry grapples with the ongoing pandemic and rising costs, theatres are finding innovative ways to adapt and survive. Online streaming platforms, interactive audience experiences, and community outreach initiatives are just some of the strategies being employed to keep the curtain rising. This resilience and adaptability offer a glimpse into the future of theatre, one that is both dynamic and determined.
  • Examples:
    • National Theatre (UK) – streaming productions online
    • The Public Theater (NYC) – interactive “Mobile Unit” program
    • Berliner Ensemble (Germany) – community outreach workshops
  • Source:Sarah Hemming, The New York Times, January 27, 2024 
  • The Story:From playwrights and directors to actors and producers, women are making their voices heard and shaping the future of theatre. Initiatives like the Kilroy Prize for Playwrights and the Athena Festival are fostering gender equality and providing platforms for female artists to tell their stories. This shift in power dynamics promises a more diverse and vibrant theatrical landscape.
  • Examples:
    • Kilroy Prize for Playwrights – established in 2014 to honor the work of emerging female American playwrights
    • Athena Festival – founded in 2012, a biennial festival celebrating women in theatre
  • Source: Wendy Ide, The Guardian, January 26, 2024 
  • The Story:The allure of the stage isn’t limited to live audiences. Filmmakers are increasingly turning to theatre for inspiration, adapting beloved plays and musicals into captivating cinematic experiences. From Joel Coen’s “Macbeth” to Stephen Frears’ “The Ferryman,” these adaptations offer fresh perspectives on classic stories and showcase the talent of both stage and screen actors.
  • Recent examples:
    • “Macbeth” (2021) – directed by Joel Coen, starring Denzel Washington and Frances McDormand
  • “The Ferryman” (2019) – directed by Stephen Frears, starring Stephen Rea and Ciarán Hinds

Thank you for visiting Stage Voices.  Please return.


(Michael Billington’s article appeared in the Guardian, 1/18; Photo: Fine performance … David Warner as Falstaff and Geoffrey Streatfeild as Prince Hal in Henry IV Part I in 2008. Photograph: Tristram Kenton/The Guardian.)

Ian McKellen follows in the footsteps of David Warner and Antony Sher as he takes on a character who has been played as wittily jovial and cruelly cunning

When asked why he had never played Falstaff, Charles Laughton said: “We had to throw too many of his kind out of our family’s hotel in Scarborough.” Undeterred by such niceties, Ian McKellen will shortly be taking on the “fat knight” in Player Kings, Robert Icke’s conflation of the two parts of Henry IV. Great actors of the past, such as David Garrick and Edmund Kean, chose to play Hotspur rather than Falstaff. But today most actors would bite your arm off for the chance to have a go at the role – and you can see why.

Falstaff, as a dramatic character, is as complex, contradictory and multilayered as Hamlet. At one extreme WH Auden saw him as a figure of supernatural, Christ-like charity: at another, he is viewed as the embodiment of Vice as portrayed in the medieval morality plays. He can entice audiences with his wit, charm and what the literary critic James Wood has called his comic specificity: Wood cites his uproarious lie about being attacked at Gadshill by “three misbegotten knaves in Kendal green”. But Falstaff can also repel spectators with his predatoriness and casual cruelty. The contradiction is there from the start when Falstaff seeks to justify nocturnal theft to Hal by saying: “Let us be Diana’s foresters, gentlemen of the shade, minions of the moon.” Was night-time robbery ever more seductively phrased?

But, looking at a handful of first-rate Falstaffs over the past 40 years, I see a greater stress on the character’s dark side. One reason is that we increasingly play Part Two, in which Falstaff is aware of old age and death, alongside the more boisterous Part One. Another is that actors and directors have shed the sentimentality of the past. Although I had qualms about Michael Bogdanov’s Marxist reading of the plays, John Woodvine was wonderful in the English Stage Company’s 1987 Henriad. As I wrote at the time, he was alternately “sly as a fox and warm as a coal-fire” and relished his verbal ingenuity. At the height of the Gadshill scene, he crucially urged Hal to mark his tale “for it is worth the listening to”.

If Woodvine was a Falstaff who knew his own worth, Robert Stephens in Adrian Noble’s 1991 production was a growingly tragic character; indeed I was more moved than by Stephens’ acclaimed King Lear. For a start, Stephens hinted at his knowledge of a better self: when, at the end of Part One, he vowed “to live cleanly as a nobleman should do” I was reminded of a fallen Lucifer aware of a paradise lost. But the clinching moment came in Part Two. Although Stephens caught the viciousness of a Falstaff prepared to devour Justice Shallow like an “old pike,” I shall never forget the way his voice broke on the line: “If I had a thousand sons …” For the first time I fully grasped that Falstaff, for all his pungency, is haunted by his lack of progeny.

(Read more)


Twelfth Night, or What You Will


Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss one of Shakespeare’s great comedies, which plays in the space between marriage, love and desire. By convention a wedding means a happy ending and here there are three, but neither Orsino nor Viola, Olivia nor Sebastian know much of each other’s true character and even the identities of the twins Viola and Sebastian have only just been revealed to their spouses to be. These twins gain some financial security but it is unclear what precisely the older Orsino and Olivia find enduringly attractive in the adolescent objects of their love. Meanwhile their hopes and illusions are framed by the fury of Malvolio, tricked into trusting his mistress Olivia loved him and who swears an undefined revenge on all those who mocked him.


Pascale Aebischer
Professor of Shakespeare and Early Modern Performance Studies at the University of Exeter

Michael Dobson
Professor of Shakespeare Studies and Director of the Shakespeare Institute at the University of Birmingham


Emma Smith
Professor of Shakespeare Studies at Hertford College, University of Oxford

Produced by Simon Tillotson, Victoria Brignell and Luke Mulhall



(Arifa Akbar’s article appeared in the Guardin, 12/15; Photo: Coolly creepy … David Tennant and Cush Jumbo in Macbeth. Photograph: Marc Brenner.)

Donmar Warehouse, London
The staging is imaginative and expressive, and the audience is immersed in the action by hearing everything through headphones

This is the second starry adaptation of Shakespeare’s Scottish play within the month, both boasting high concepts. Simon Godwin’s show premiered in a warehouse with Ralph Fiennes and Indira Varma as the crown-usurping couple. This production is just as celebrity-driven, with David Tennant and Cush Jumbo as its leads. But where Godwin’s show flirted with immersive theatricality, half successfully, Max Webster’s concept combines immersion in sound with a fantastically creepy filmic expressionism.

We channel the sounds of the play through binaural headphones. The use of aural three-dimensionality here, designed by Gareth Fry, is incorporated with live folk music, which brings Celtic sounds while the action takes place on a central stage and glass box behind it.

As fanciful as that sounds, there is an intensely focused vision behind it. Superbly directed by Webster, it is full of wolfish imagination and alarming surprise. The action takes place at under two hours’ traffic yet it is not a classically fevered Macbeth but coolly creepy, and horrifying.

Sound, in Shakespeare’s text, has great disturbing significance. That is made manifest here. The 3D headphones magnify every creak and whimper. We hear the cold clink of metal as Lady Macbeth snatches the daggers with which Macbeth has killed Duncan (Benny Young) to return them to the crime scene.

The witches take the concept a step further and appear in sound rather than form. They are sinister in their absence, invisibly roaming in the vapour and smoke around the stage, present as a sibilant chorus of whispering voices played by the entire cast – an ingenious way to suggest that they represent the ever-present murderous voice in Macbeth’s head. They moan, giggle and flap crow-like in our ears, bringing an uncomfortable intimacy.

The headphones allow Tennant and Jumbo to talk in low conspiratorial tones. Tennant is a wiry, austere, self-righteous warrior who turns his intelligence into calculating outrage. He makes this Shakespearean role look effortless as he murmurs his soliloquies and we hang on his every word. There is steel and cunning to Jumbo’s Lady Macbeth, dressed in virginal white throughout, and a sense of purity remains around her despite her plotting.

Paradoxically, hearing the dialogue through headphones brings intimacy but one reminiscent of film with an augmented Dolby sound, as if these characters are not talking in real time.

(Read more)


Eddie Izzard

Returns to New York with One-Person

Hamlet by William Shakespeare

From January 25 – March 3

At Off-Broadway’s Greenwich House Theater

Opening Night February 11

Adapted by Mark Izzard

Directed by Selina Cadell

Produced by WestBeth Entertainment, Mick Perrin Worldwide,

and John Gore

Eddie Izzard will take the New York stage this winter for six weeks only, playing 23 characters in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, adapted by Mark Izzard and directed by Selena Cadell at off-Broadway’s Greenwich House Theater (27 Barrow Street) from January 25-March 3; opening night is February 11.

Eddie returns to New York following last year’s sold-out run of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, which played to rave reviews at Greenwich House and in London’s West End. Hamlet reunites Eddie with Selina and Mark who collaborated on Great Expectations. It is produced by WestBeth Entertainment, Mick Perrin Worldwide, and John Gore.

In Hamlet, The King of Denmark is dead, and Prince Hamlet is determined to take revenge, initiating a cascade of events that will destroy both family and state. Eddie will be portraying men, women, ghosts, scholars, tyrants, courtiers, lovers, fools, and poets. She says, “I have always gravitated towards playing complex and challenging characters and Hamlet is the ultimate. This is a production for everyone, a timeless drama with an accidental hero. Selina, Mark, and I want audiences to see and hear an accessible, touching, scary and dramatic Hamlet.”

Best known as an actor, multi-lingual comedian, multi-marathon runner and trailblazing political candidate. Eddie Izzard’s career pushes boundaries and defies description with record-breaking comedy tours and critically acclaimed film, TV, and theatre performances.   

The design team is Tom Piper (set), Tyler Elich (lighting), Tom Piper and Libby DaCosta (costume stylists), and Didi Hopkins (Movement Director).  It is produced by WestBeth Entertainment, Mick Perrin Worldwide, and John Gore.

Tickets are now available here.



(Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

EDDIE IZZARD’s Broadway credits are A Day in the Death of Joe Egg (Tony Award nomination) and Race. Off Broadway: Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Her London stage credits include The CryptogramEdward II900 OneontaJoe Egg, and Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Eddie’s film credits include Stephen Frears’ Victoria & Abdul opposite Dame Judi Dench, ValkyrieOcean’s Twelve, Ocean’s Thirteen, Julie Taymor’s Across the Universe, Mystery Men, Shadow of the VampireThe Cat’s MeowSix Minutes to Midnight and the current Doctor Jekyll in which Eddie plays Dr. Nina Jekyll and Rachel Hyde. TV audiences also saw her as Dr. Abel Gideon in Bryan Fuller’s series, “Hannibal.” Izzard starred in and executive produced FX’s critically acclaimed series, “The Riches.” Other notable TV films include “Castles in the Sky,” “Treasure Island,” and the Emmy winning “Lost Christmas.” Izzard made her West End stage debut in 1993 in the solo show Live at the Ambassadors, receiving an Olivier Award nomination for Outstanding Achievement. That was followed by a succession of critically acclaimed shows: Unrepeatable, Definite Article, Glorious, Dress to Kill, Circle, Sexie, Stripped, Force Majeure, and Wunderbar. Eddie is the recipient of two Emmy Awards (for Dressed to Kill) and an Emmy Award nomination for the documentary, Believe: The Eddie Izzard Story. Her autobiography Believe Me, entered the top ten in the New York Times and Sunday Times bestseller lists.  She performs her comedy shows in four languages and since 2009 has run 131 marathons to raise money for Sport Relief and her “Make Humanity Great Again” fund. 

SELINA CADELL (Director) is a director, actress, and coach. Theatre directing includes Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations (New York and London), Love for Love (RSC), The Life I Lead (West End), The Double Dealer (Orange Tree London), The Rivals (Arcola London), The Way of the World (Wilton’s London), The Rake’s Progress (Wilton’s London). Films include The Turn of the Screw (Best Opera Film 2021 Critics Circle Award). Acting/Theatre includes Top Girls (NYC) /Obie Award, Stanley (NYC), Madness of King George (NYC), Twelfth Night, Cherry Orchard (NYC), A Monster Calls (London). TV includes “Midsomer Murders,” “Queens of Mystery,” “Poirot,” “Doc Martin” (Mrs. Tishell). Selina runs an opera company with Eliza Thompson, OperaGlass Works. Their new film of La Traviata will be out next spring.

MARK IZZARD (Adapter). Hamlet marks his and Eddie’s second collaboration, following Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Prior to this, Mark’s involvement with his sibling’s career has been limited to a brief stint as sound technician (cassette-recorder) in Eddie’s first ever comedy show at the Edinburgh Fringe in 1981 and a series of European tours (2014-18) when Eddie performed stand-up comedy in French, German, and Spanish. Mark’s role was to simplify and adapt the translated routines into a language which Eddie could reproduce on stage, a task made possible by Mark speaking all three languages. In the process both siblings discovered that they worked well together, their shared sense of humor offsetting the more ‘difficult’ moments of the creative process.

DIDI HOPKINS (Movement Director) is one of the foremost practitioners of Commedia dell’Arte and works physically and visually in theatre. She worked with writer Richard Bean’s Broadway success, One Man, Two Guvnors, and has worked with director Selina Cadell at the Royal Shakespeare Company as movement director on Restoration Comedy. She was co-founder of Beryl and the Perils who were the ‘hottest thing part from the weather’ (Village Voice), performed at WOW festival, Central Park, TNC, the Mudd Club. The National Theatre made five films about her work in Commedia. She was last represented in New York with Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations.

TOM PIPER (Scenic Designer/Costume Stylist) was Associate Designer at the RSC for 10 years and has designed over 50 productions for the company. Theatre work includes Medea (EIF/NTS); Girl on an Altar, White Teeth (Kiln); Faith (RSC/ Coventry City of Culture); Nora: A Doll’s House (Young Vic); The Tempest, Hamnet, Box of Delights (RSC) The Histories (RSC Olivier Award for Best Costume Design); As You Like It (RSC Armoury’s NY); Cyrano de Bergerac (NTS); Carmen La Cubana (Le Chatelet, Paris); Red Velvet Tricycle Theatre/St. Ann’s Warehouse NY); Orfeo (Royal Opera House); Tamburlaine The Great (TFNA, NY); The Great Wave (RNT). Turn of the Screw (Wiltons/OperaGlassworks film); Richard III, Tempest, As You Like It; The Bridge Project at BAM, and Eddie Izzard in Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. Design credits: Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red at the Tower of London and received an MBE for services to Theatre and First World War commemorations. Exhibition credits: Alice Curiouser and CuriouserWinnie-the-PoohCurtain Up (V&A, Lincoln Center NY); Shakespeare Staging the World (British Museum).

LIBBY da COSTA (Costume Stylist) is a London based costume designer who trained at the prestigious London College of Fashion and Wimbledon College of Art. Over the course of her career, Libby has had the pleasure of working for a diverse range of clients, creating unique and powerful designs for television, film, commercials and now theatre! Libby recently designed the feature film Doctor Jekyll, the story of Jacqueline Hyde in which Eddie plays the lead roles, Nina Jekyll and Rachel Hyde. Whatever the brief or project, Libby combines her passion, insight, and years of industry experience to realize any vision with imagination and flair. Libby has been seduced by the fast-paced, creative lifestyle involved in this line of work and is never afraid of a challenge. She is a storyteller and fantasist and through her costumes the characters are born. From contemporary through to period, Libby has worked with costumes that date back to as early as 1744. She was last represented in New York with Eddie Izzard in Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations in 2022.

TYLER ELICH, LIGHTSWITCH (Lighting Designer). Tyler’s passion for creating a powerful shared experience has allowed him to work in many different areas including rock concert touring, television broadcasts, corporate product launches, million square foot conventions, and special events. Tyler is super excited to be working with Eddie again after four worldwide comedy tours and the successful New York and London runs of Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations.

ELIZA THOMPSON (Music Composition) works in various aspects of music for film, TV, and theatre. Film Music Supervisor credits include: The Madness of King George, The Crucible, Dangerous Liaisons, Shadowlands, The Woodlanders, Groundhog Day. Music Consultant/Score Producer film credits include: Othello, The Importance of Being Earnest, An Ideal Husband, Fade to Black, Dorian Gray, St Trinian’s 1 and 2. As a composer, Eliza has composed and arranged the music for Selina Cadell’s productions of The Way of the World, The Rivals, Love for Love, The Double Dealer, The Life I Lead and Eddie Izzard’s Great Expectations. She is co-founder of OperaGlass Works, directing and producing chamber opera.

WESTBETH ENTERTAINMENT (Arnold Engelman, Founder/President) has consistently delivered critically acclaimed, financially successful, groundbreaking productions for over 40 years. Beginning as The WestBeth Theatre Center and morphing into WestBeth Entertainment, developing and introducing artists and talent to North American audiences is a big part of WestBeth’s history. From Billy Connolly to Eddie Izzard, The Jim Henson Company to John Leguizamo and Trevor Noah to Hannah Gadsby, WBE has been the creative catalyst, partner, and producer of some of the most innovative performances and productions on the continent in venues throughout North America including Madison Square Garden, The Hollywood Bowl, Toronto’s Massey Hall, The Chicago Theatre and Radio City Musical Hall. WestBeth’s most recent productions include Tommy Tiernan’s tomfoolery North America tour, Eddie Izzard’s The Remix Live North American tour, Aunty Donna’s ‘The Magical Dead Cat Tour’ across the US and Canada, Off-Broadway production of Eddie Izzard performing Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations followed by a critically acclaimed run in London’s prestigious Garrick Theatre, Professor Brian Cox’s Horizon‘ tour of North America, Eddie Izzard’s Wunderbar US and Canadian tours, and Brian Henson’s Puppet Up! Uncensored for multiple runs in Los Angeles. Other productions include Eddie Izzard’s first US book tour for his New York Times bestselling memoir Believe Me, North American debut of Australia’s comedy group Aunty Donna, Hannah Gadsby’s North American debut of Nanette and the off-Broadway run of Douglas, Dylan Moran’s Off The Hook North American tour, Noel Fielding (of The Mighty Boosh and “The Great British Bake Off,”) North American debut tour An Evening with Noel Fielding, Eddie Izzard’s Force Majeure American tour performed in all 50 states; Billy Connolly’s High Horse tour, the Off-Broadway debut of comedian Trevor Noah’s Born a Crime; Eric Idle’s What About Dick? filmed for Netflix; John Leguizamo’s Ghetto Klown on Broadway, national tour, West End, and in Colombia, South America; off-Broadway, Australian tour, Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Las Vegas runs of Brian Henson’s Puppet Up! Uncensored.

MICK PERRIN WORLDWIDE (Producer). Mick Perrin is a UK based producer/ promoter/agent with a company he began over 20 years ago. Mick spent his youth playing in various punk bands around the UK and was the original STOMP production/tour manager. An extensive career in tour management turned to promotion, with the first ever UK arena tour with Eddie Izzard’s Sexie Tour.  Mick Perrin Worldwide currently tours over 50 artistes across 45 nations and is a major producer of comedy talent at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, first introducing the likes of Bo Burnham, Trevor Noah, Simon Amstell, and Brett Goldstein. Awards include an Emmy (Eddie Izzard’s “Dress to Kill,)” Olivier Award for La Clique, Olivier Award for La Soiree, and a Chortle Award for Off-Stage Contribution. He was last represented in New York with Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations, which was followed by a critically acclaimed eight-week engagement at London’s prestigious Garrick Theatre. 

JOHN GORE (Producer) has won 20 Tonys, two Oliviers, two Emmy Awards and the Actors Fund medal of Honour. Since 2019 he has been listed in the Variety 500 most influential business leaders in media. The John Gore Organization family of companies includes Broadway Across America,, The Broadway Channel,, and Group Sales Box Office presenting such hits as WickedHamilton and Disney’s The Lion King. As a film and TV producer his work includes the film Believe: The Eddie Izzard Story directed by Sarah Townsend (2010 Emmy nomination) and the nationally syndicated Broadway entertainment news program, The Broadway Show with Tamsen Fadal (2021 NY Emmy Award). He directed the only stage adaptations of Batman and Star Trek and produced the record-breaking Thunderbirds FAB, which at the age of 26 made him the youngest ever successful West End producer. In 2023 he became the owner of Hammer Films whose current release stars Suzy/Eddie Izzard as Doctor Jekyll. A committed philanthropist, John provides support to more than 60 organizations including the Princess Grace Foundation USA, underwriting Hamilton’s education programs, and providing theater educators in the NYC public schools through the Arthur Miller Foundation. He partnered with Scarlett Johansson to organize an all-star benefit reading of Our Town featuring Johansson, Robert Downey Jr., and the stars of the Avengers, raising $500,000 for Hurricane Maria Relief. Via he is an avid supporter of Family Equality advancing equality for LGBTQ families. His company recently sponsored the building of the Rita Moreno Arts Building in West Hollywood and made possible free tuition for all acting students at Julliard in perpetuity by funding their first year.

GREENWICH HOUSE was founded in 1902 with a mission to help New Yorkers lead more fulfilling lives through social and health services and cultural and education programs.  Annually, nearly 15,000 people are served at their Senior Centers, Music School, Pottery, After-School and Summer Camp, Nursery School and clinics addressing behavioral health for seniors, adults overcoming addiction and for victims of child abuse.




Dubbed “The villain of Broadway” by Playbill, Tony Award® Nominee and Grammy Award® Winner Patrick Page has never shied away from exploring his dark side. Now, with this tour de force show, he turns his attention to the twisted motivation and hidden humanity at the heart of Shakespeare’s greatest villains. Moving swiftly through the Shakespeare canon, Page illuminates the playwright’s ever-evolving conception of evil by delving into more than a dozen of his most wicked creations. Thrilling, biting, hilarious, and enlightening, what Page delivers is a masterclass on the most terrifying subject of them all: human nature.








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William Shakespeare. Portrait of William Shakespeare 1564-1616. Chromolithography after Hombres y Mujeres celebres 1877, Barcelona Spain

(Jeffrey S. Solochek’s article appeared in the Tampa Bay Times, 8/8; via the Drudge Report.)

The big story: After Florida adopted its Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking standards in 2020, the Department of Education distributed recommended reading lists it said included “top of the line literary works with world renowned titles.”

Authors on the high school list included William Shakespeare.

Three years later, some Florida school districts are shying away from Shakespeare, along with other classic and popular materials. They say they’re attempting to comply with new state law restricting books with and instruction about sexual content.

Hillsborough County became the latest to take this step, telling teachers they could assign excerpts of plays such as “Romeo and Juliet,” but not the full text.

“I think the rest of the nation — no, the world, is laughing us,” Gaither High teacher Joseph Cool said after learning of the directive. “Taking Shakespeare in its entirety out because the relationship between Romeo and Juliet is somehow exploiting minors is just absurd.” Read more here.

The availability of books has become a regular flash point for Florida’s public schools. Groups of parents have pushed to get some materials removed, while other groups have pushed just as hard to keep as many titles available as possible.

(Read more)